Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu on Saturday stressed the need for making all cities smart, or else, it will not make a big difference to the country.
Addressing people after bhoomi pujan for the first and only Greenfield smart city project here, Naidu said: “Only one Ranchi Smart City or 100 smart cities in the country will not make a big difference unless all the cities are made smart. For this, the participation of all the people and stakeholders is important.”
Naidu was here on the second day of his maiden Jharkhand tour after becoming Vice President. He also laid the foundation stone for an urban civic centre, a convention centre and an urban planning and management institute.
Naidu said the situation in the country must change. “Electricity comes and goes erratically and this old concept must go. All the places and houses must have 24x7 electricity,” he added.
Speaking on the occasion, Chief Minister Raghubar Das and Urban Development Minister C.P. Singh said that the Smart City Project will be completed in a time span of two years with transparency.
The Chief Minister said that the state government has paid Rs 743 crore to PSU Heavy Engineering Corporation (HEC) for 564 acre land for the Smart City project. With this amount, he said, the HEC will pay back its old dues and due salaries of its employees and labourers, which will benefit the people of Jharkhand.
The vice president said that the local bureaucracy, local bodies and politicians must work together taking on board the common people to fulfil ambitious projects. He asked the authorities to develop smart cities in such a way that they should have both parks and parking facilities.
He said people of Jharkhand are quite fortunate as there is good weather condition, greenery, labourious people and 40% of the country's mineral resources.
Naidu said he suggested to the state government to appoint a CEO for the project and he was told that the CEO would be appointed within a week. “Such an ambitious project must be executed with transparency, accountability and participation from the people. If there is transparency, the people will always be ready to contribute in the form of taxes,” he pointed out.